The Despair of Lateness

An old employer of mine, a US firm as you would probably guess, had a phrase that they used throughout my induction and training:

  • To be early is to be on time
  • To be on time is to be late
  • To be late is unacceptable

What they mean is you don’t arrive at the time you are supposed to start work because it will take you a few minutes to get to your desk and actually start work.

Combined with my morbid fear of being late anywhere, this has stuck with me for many years and I have spouted it to anyone who will listen when the subject of timekeeping comes up.

For 99% of the time I arrive at an appropriate time, usually well early, just in case.  I always add about 50% to the time I expect a journey to take to compensate for train delays due to snow, leaves, landslides, fog, mist, air or whatever the latest excuse for delays is.  Why is it that our beloved train companies can still make me late?

Why do I whitter on about timekeeping here?  Two reasons:

  1. I was late the other day due to slightly damp train tracks
  2. Making sure you arrive on time shows that you respect your customer/prospect and that you value their time and the business they are/will be doing with you


What would you do with another £2000 in your pocket?

An extra couple of grand could help out with a number of things, not least paying your salary as a small business owner.

Most small businesses have multiple routes to market and 2-3 of them will be really successful.  In addition there will be a couple that broadly break even and then one or two that are right Rotters – they lose money.

The problem is that the success of the high performers often disguises that of the Rotters and they go unchecked.

If you identified the Rotters and stopped spending good money after bad, what could you do with that money?

Answers on a comment form please!

Where do I find…..?

Where do I find….. is a common question on LinkedIn.  Along with “How do I….”, it’s almost as common on social media sites such as LinkedIn as “X ways to convince you to buy my services”.

These are the questions I initially look for, whether in Group discussions or Answers as they are often the easiest ones to answer in a way that really helps the asker.

The answer I nearly always give  is quite easy:

Use your usual search engine, or LinkedIn, to find a number of potential suppliers.  Ask them the question and then base your choice of solution provider (assuming you are actually looking to invest in a solution to your problem) on the following factors:

  • Did you gel with the person(s) who responded?
  • Did their answer actually make sense and show they understood your question?
  • Does the evidence they provide, of previous successful solutions, generate confidence in your mind?

If the answer to each is yes, I think you have found your supplier.  If not, move on

Selling an Elephant

You all know I am an avid LinkedIn networker and there are times when I spend too much time on there but there are reasons for that: I’m building my network and building SME Needs as a business.  There is one thing, however, that I never do when on there: sell.

Don’t get me wrong, I would love to be working for a few more LinkedIn users but I know that will come in time.  What I do is help people by commenting, providing advice and introducing people to each other, in the knowledge that they will want to help me sometime in the future. If you received an InMail from me as someone you’d never heard of before, would you consider buying from me based on this message:

Dear You,

I found you on LinkedIn and reckon there are lots of synergies.  I’m really good at what I do and would love to sell to you


No, I wouldn’t either but that is exactly what  happened the other day; I received just such an InMail.

When will people learn?